The Buick Invitational
, is a PGA Tour
tournament played in the San Diego, California
area in the early part of the Tour season, known as the "West Coast Swing." The tournament was originally known as the San Diego Open, and was noted for having singer-actor Andy Williams
as a celebrity host during much of its existence. The Buick Invitational is the fourth event on the 2008 PGA Tour schedule
From 1952-53, the tournament was played at San Diego Country Club in Chula Vista, California
before spending 1954 at Rancho Santa Fe Golf Club in Rancho Santa Fe, California
. In 1955 the event moved to Mission Valley Country Club in San Diego, California
, and after the 1956 event was played at Singing Hills Country Club in El Cajon, California
, the event returned to Mission Valley CC until 1961. In 1962, Mission Valley CC changed its name to Stardust Country Club (and now is known as Riverwalk Golf Club) and the event stayed there from 1962-63; after spending 1964 at Rancho Bernardo Country Club (now Rancho Bernardo Inn) in San Diego, California
, it returned to Stardust CC until 1967.
In 1968, the event began its relationship with Torrey Pines Golf Course in La Jolla, California, where it has been played ever since. In the current tournament set-up, players will split the first 36 holes between the North and South Courses, then play the final 36 holes on the South Course. In 2008, Torrey Pines-South hosted the U.S. Open.
Buick Invitational of California
Shearson Lehman Brothers Open
Shearson Lehman Hutton Open
Shearson Lehman Hutton Andy Williams Open
Shearson Lehman Brothers Andy Williams Open
Isuzu-Andy Williams San Diego Open
Wickes-Andy Williams San Diego Open
Andy Williams-San Diego Open Invitational
San Diego Open Invitational
Convair-San Diego Open
San Diego Open
Seven players have won this tournament more than once through 2008.
Records and trivia
- Tournament course record: Torrey Pines North Course - 61, Mark Brooks, 1990, and Brandt Snedeker, 2007; Torrey Pines South Course - 62, Tiger Woods, 1999
- Tiger Woods is the only six-time winner of the tournament, and Phil Mickelson the only other golfer to win more than twice.
- Hall of Famer Gene Littler is the only golfer to have won the tournament as an amateur, doing so in 1954. Littler, a San Diego native, never won as a professional - although he was runner-up three times (1969, 1974, 1978).
- One of the most memorable years in the tournament's history was 1982, when Johnny Miller outdueled Jack Nicklaus to win by one stroke.
- Tiger Woods (2005-08) won the tournament four straight years. J. C. Snead (1975-76) and Phil Mickelson (2000-01) won in back-to-back years.
- In 1952, Boxer Joe Louis was invited to play in the San Diego Open on a sponsor's exemption, and became the first African American ever to play in this PGA Tour event.